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tv   Hardball With Chris Matthews  MSNBC  April 1, 2010 5:00pm-6:00pm EDT

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of the line? well, that's in the "hardball" sideshow tonight. and let me finish tonight with a question -- how much is too much? the top 25 hedge fund managers made $25 billion last year. what kind of society gives that kind of money who create -- nothing. we start with the trouble with the rnc. the republican national committee. "newsweek's" howard fineman joins us, he's an msnbc political analyst and a big wheel at "newsweek" magazine. and clarence pat as always writes for the "chicago tribune." some things never change, you're one of the great old trees in the forest. in the world of interactive online. you're with a newspaper. >> i was synergy, before synergy was cool, i want to tell you. >> from the second city. >> there you go. >> let's talk about this thing, little things cause big problems. but little things that are iconic. like spending a couple k on a sex club. a lesbian bondage club. it's called the voyeur. the $2,000 check was approved by
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the rnc. paid for by donors until they got caught. >> right. >> tony perkins, remember the guy that knifed the girl in the shower? >> not that tony perkins. >> i don't know why the -- let's call the kid tony. sbalen in her pristine greatness, she's running away from the rnc. they're all saying, don't give a nickel to the rnc any more. how long is this going to go on? >> that's the question. i would not be surprised if we see michael steele friday evening resignation. but yi don't know if that's a fact. the pressure on him has to be tremendous. if it was just this case of the strip club, it would be a small story. but this has been building over time because he's been spending more money than he's taking in. >> burning it. >> burning it at a faster rate. >> that's always the issue in politics, you're supposed to bring in more than you're spending. here's what the family research council.
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not the the one in psycho, the tony perkins, told david shuster. >> there's just been a string of incidents that is made clear to me, that the rnc is indifferent in at best to the concerns of many social conservatives. the rnc does not reflect the values of the folks that we represent across the country. >> wow. how big is this? >> well i think it's big. the family research council is not the entire conservative base by any means, but tony perkins is is a pretty sophisticated player. behind the scenes, he says, because i talked to him about an hour ago. he said, look, i've been trying to help michael steele out for the last year. help him survive. because michael steele only won narrowly to become chairman to begin with. two weeks ago, michael steele hired to represent the rnc in a campaign finance case, ted olson, who is a very well-credentialed conservative lawyer. his crime is trying to overturn prop 8 in callal and trying to end bans on gay marriage around
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the country. huge no-no for perkins and his crowd. and then this thing happened today. he just spoke to perkins, he said, i haven't heard from steele. i had the shot across the bow to steele this morning. i still haven't heard from him. what does that mean? it to me it means that steele is hiding under his desk. >> and sarah palin who only takes an hour off from the news cycle, she's always in the news, she said she's not going to go to this big new orleans fundraiser. >> even though she'll be in town at another event. but she's not going to go to this raiser and doesn't want to have her name associated with it. >> the interesting thing, we'll come up with this in the next segment. democrats are in trouble now in terms of the polling. but this situation, just in time that the republicans have a chance to exploit. the difficulty that the democrats have in selling health care and the economy. the republicans are not institutionally capable of exploiting it. they've got a leader they don't like. >> the rnc as an institution is a complete mess. you have to remember over the last generation, the republican
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national committee has been the place that's the point of the lance for republican grassroots act at this time. that's not the case any more. and even though you can say that they're all of these independent groups out there, which there are, traditionally in the republican party, the rnc has been the hub of the wheel. that's not the case any more. it's going to hurt them. the other thing is, tony perkins' people, the social conservatives are the bedrock of the republican party. if michael steele stays in office from now through november, i can see every parking lot in every megachurch having a flyer on the windshield, about the voyeur club. >> no. >> why not? why not? why not? if he's still there. if he's still there. >> he's violating the first rule of politics, which is, don't divide your base. and that is the republican base, between christian conservatives, the evangelicals, perkins' faction. the country club conservatives and the blue collar reagan democrats. >> what does he have to do, flog this person? at this point, is there anything he can do?
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>> if it takes a two-thirds vote of the republican national committee to remove a chairman. and as one member told me, it's easier to get rid of the british prime minister than the head of the rnc. so it's unlikely that he can be forced out by a vote. >> what about clarence's idea that he can walk under the pressure. >> he's not known for self-awareness, either. i don't think. >> they could offer himg something. because he's already been under pressure to resign. >> what do you offer a fellow of his eminence when you have no power? what are they going to give him, a clerk's job on capitol hill? >> i know republicans are party of poverty, but maybe they can scratch something together. >> near not going to do it, they're going to work around him. ed gillespie who is really a power in town in the republican party, is spearheading this independent movement -- >> mike duncan, the previous rnc chair. it's got the backing of karl rove and gillespie. >> those are the key players. >> it will raise $52 million from wealthy republicans and of course, corporations their new base under this new supreme court ruling.
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>> they're going to claim they're going to raise that much, maybe they'll raise some. and the chamber of commerce is going to spend $50 million, they can take it out of their dues and treasury, under the new supreme court statute. so the republicans are going to work around the republican national committee, if steele doesn't leave. >> we had glen blackwell on the show the other night. he was secretary of state in ohio, he lost the governor's race. >> and he also lost a chairman's race. >> i had a sense, i said so to him, i won't speak behind his back. i have a sense that ken is running for this job. >> he ran for it before, michael steele edged him out. >> he's speaking very politely in the way that he would run the job. >> the mouse under the table we haven't talked about is the fact that one reason why steele stayed in the job according to insiders, is that there's not a polite, easy way to fire the first african-american chairman, especially -- >> first ever. >> in the age of obama. and you know, i'm sure ken blackwell is saying -- by the way, i could qualify for that i could ease this guy out by
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easing myself in. >> right. but like howard said, it takes 16 states to call a meeting, it takes two-thirds to vote him out. >> is there a big deal in the republican party, a male or female boss from the old school. bob strauss for example from the democratic party, who could come forward and say, i want to have dinner with you tonight, young fellow and we're going to talk about this and bring in somebody else. is there any higher authority in the party than michael steele? >> the bush family, father and son, chose to not play that role. they walked away from it. i used 20 think hailey barbour might be one. >> who is that guy, the wealthy republican, fischer? >> max fischer from detroit? >> there's no guy like that. there just isn't. there are too many -- there are too many bundlers around. if you're talking about all the hedge fund guys, there are too many bundlers around, too much money. there's no one person -- >> if you're interested in the
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hedge fund guys, i'll be getting to those guys tonight. thank you, howard -- i know what you guys do for a living. howard fineman and it's a very important think thing that we do. thank you, clarence and thank you, howard. coming up, how can the democrats avoid repeating the election disaster of 1994 when they lost both houses. the strategists are warming up to talk about it. the big question is right this year, the democrats are on the precipice of losing perhaps the ball game. everything but the white house. you're watching "hardball." if you have heartburn more than one day a week, try prilosec otc. it shuts down many acid-producing stomach pumps for twenty-four hours of heartburn protection with just one pill a day. for frequent heartburn, try prilosec otc.
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welcome back to "hardball." there's a lot of political energy out there in the country right now. it's up to each party to grab some of it commenting on the current political environment, democratic pollster, stan greenberg said, if the election were now, we'd have a change election. we'd have a 1994. and that's bad news for democrats. and stanley is a democrat. joining me is strategist, democratic strategist steve mcmahon and republican strategist, todd hess. the first set of numbers are very dangerous for democrats. a new gallup poll shows 47% of the country prefer the republicans in november in a congressional race, that's general question, who do you want to win, republican or democrat. 47 pore republican, 44 for the democratic candidate. this is a big switch, you can see the lines crossing, with the democratic line going down and the republican red line above
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it. and the approval for the democratic party is down to 41%. which is the lowest ever seen by the gallup poll for the democratic party. they've been taking the polls since 1992. that's 18 years of polling and it's the lowest number ever for the democrats. i want to take the defensive fellow, my friend steve before i go to my friend todd. how do you defend when it looks like your number, the generic, are you likely to vote democrat or republican, has dropped below the other party's? >> the fact that democrats are behind right now is troublinging. but it's serge not something that is surprising, given the fact that a very partisan bill just passed. the public was pretty deeply divided on this, largely because the republicans were able to demonize it and make it something it's not. the president has to go back and make the case to the country that this is a good bill. not just for the people who didn't have insurance, but for the people who do. because it will give them stability and bring down costs over the long term. there's no question that democrats have a challenge right
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now. >> do you believe if you had an election today, you'd lose? >> there's more democrats, so more democrats -- >> would you lose the senate, too? >> i didn't say we'd lose the house, i said a lot of democrats would be defeated. but 23 defeats in a normal off-year is what's to be expected. it could be a little north of that. but you know, 40 seats is a lot. >> i remember when reagan was in trouble in '82. it was almost a depression, we have a 10% unemployment rate, basically. >> there have been three nims in the last 60 years, when gallup has asked, what is your congressional preference on political party there have been three times that republicans have polled higher than democrats. 1950, 1994, and 2002. this is the fourth time. now, this election between the health care bill -- >> you mean party i.d. is higher? >> no, it's congressional preference. republican or democrat, generic ballot. between the stimulus, the health care bill, between all this talk of cap and trade in just the
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daily drumbeat out of washington about the expansion of government, this is causing big problems for democrats. >> you don't say between when you have one and two, it's between when you have one and two and among when it's all the others. let's go to the gallup poll it shows 50% of republicans, this is the one i like, are they enthusiastic about going to the polls this november. democrats, only 35% as enthusiastic. you know, steve, i know i'm putting you basically in the barrel. these are the worst situationings to be in you've got to face the fact that people aren't so thrilled to go vote now. who are ds, and republicans can't wait to get in there for bad news. >> i wish it were tomorrow. >> you guys want to go in there and tear down the house, right? you're angry voters. you guys aren't happy people. >> todd's an angry white man. look at him. >> we're very happy about what's happening. >> i can read you, you come in here, i can always tell -- >> you are a poll indicator.
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>> he was so happy in the green room, we're going to talk about the poll numbers. >> the dirty secret in politics, in every political campaign, you don't care what all americans think, you don't even care what all voters think. the only people whose opinions campaigns really care about are likely voters who are going to show up on election day. and the way that you gauge that is by enthusiasm. how enthused is your base versus -- >> the early polls, as early as eight months out tell you who's going to vote. >> it certainly gives you a trend. and as of right now, obviously a lot can change between now and november. but as of right now, our base is motivated. >> there's something going on in which party do you favor. largely, it's independent voters who are making that a republican choice right now. rather than a democratic choice. independent voters have been a challenge for democrats for a little bit. the enthusiasm among both parties are is up. it's up about 40% among democrats from where it was a week ago, so president obama being out there, making the case, explaining to people about
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the health care reform they heard from republicans isn't the health care bill that passed. >> this is more disturbing. a new "u.s.a. today"/gallup poll has the president with 50% of the people saying he should not be re-elected. that's the highest it's been, i believe, todd. >> could think the president has much to worry about right now because he's not on the ballot this year. >> his name's not on, but he is. >> his policy is going to be a referendum. it's going to be all of those vulnerable democrats who are going to be paying the price for the mistakes that the white house has made. >> hold on a second, todd. >> here's my question, steve. i don't understand this, the president is out there campaigning like he's running for president again. he looks good in this. he's got the shirt on, the style, he's gung-ho. he's alone, the democratic party has a lot of members, you've got governors all over the place, where are the surrogates, where's the obama faction? is it just the obama faction or just him and his life.
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>> all the elected officials are present, just not on the stage with him. this is something the white house advance team determines. >> why are they out there on their own -- >> they're out there having town meetings this week. the town meetings this time are a lot different than they were in august, because people are coming and it's a very partisan conversation. >> here's the president now, i'm not sure he's getting enough help. i think he needs a whole bunch of people out there saying what he's saying. here he is in portland, maine. >> what this reform does, is it builds on the system of private health insurance that we've already got. so that if you have insurance, this reform will make it more secure and more affordable. if you can't afford insurance, or if you've been denied coverage, you're finally going to be able to get it. and over time, costs will come down for families, businesses and the federal government. reducing our deficit by more than $1 frotrillion over the ne two decades, that's what this reform will do. >> there's the president before
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a very new england crowd up there. it looks like college kids. >> i think it's very telling that the one guy who's out there during the spring recess talking about health care is the one guy whose name is not on the ballot in 2010. "reuters" just had a story out today, all members of congress have gone home. harry reid, not a single health care event planned back home in nevada for this whole recess. it means that the democrats don't want to be talking about it you've got john mccain campaigning up and down arizona on health care. republican members of congress campaigning all across the country, talking about health care. democrats who just passed this bill with some fanfare, none of them are talking about it. >> the fact that harry reid is not talking about it is telling. >> what you guys got in your barrel? you got anything to sell? or just running against this guy, just p.o. against obama every day. you got anything to sell? >> of course. >> what are your bills? >> we talked about republican proposals for health care reform that we think would lower the costs of care and not do it in a
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way that blows up the budget and cost jobs. but, look, we're the party out of power. so this is a referendum on barack obama and what the democrats have done. you are absolutely right that we have to have some kind of positive message. you've been around since the '60s, i've never heard of a republican health bill. >> and there never will be one. >> medicare, medicaid, the democrats do all this stuff. social security, you guys don't do this stuff. you do wars. >> i said on the show last week, i thought when we controlled the white house and both chambers of congress, we should have passed a health care bill. >> should have passed something. >> let me go on. this is the oil thing, i'm always fascinated when somebody does something interesting. barack obama's double data in afghanistan, i think that's a american fight. it's not a partisan fight. oil-drilling, offshore has often been a texas oil patch kind of thing. let's go drill, drill, drill, very republican. here's the president saying as part of his mix, let's do some drilling off of virginia,
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florida, alaska. what does that mean political which? why is he out there saying let's drill. >> because democrats have been losing independent voters by 60 to 40% in the last two or three elections we've done exit polling in. and the president understands that 63% of americans think we need to do more to explore offshore reserves. it's not just oil that's going to be drilled for. it's natural gas. and you know -- >> which is clean. >> which is clean. and there's nobody in america who thinks that fossil fuels are going to go away even as we try to become -- >> this is a smart, down-the-middle thing, do you agree? >> absolutely. smart move politically, not only for the reason that steve laid out. but he needs to do this now if he has any hope of picking up moderate republicans to support his cap-and-trade legislation and as we head into summer, gas prices spike. if he wasn't doing something to show that he was alleviating the supply-and-problem that causes the fluctuation, he'd have a huge political target around his tech. >> you start drilling now, you
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get the gas in three or four years. but someday we may be in a society where our cars are powered by wind and sun. but there's going to be a point where we're going to run out of gas and we want to have the offshore potential, right? >> right. i think most american people want all energy solutions on the table. >> he's going to be leader of the country now. i think he's got to do things like afghanistan and this and debt reduction, thinks that you like. i'm with him, too. thank you, steve. if you like it, i'm getting nervous. thank you, steve mcmahon and thank you todd harris. up next, the top 2009 hedge fund incomes, guess how many zeros you can fit into a paycheck. somebody tell me what these guys do? that's in the sideshow, you're watching "hardball." get ready for the billionaires. ♪ three decadent flavors. 60 calories.
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back to "hardball" and time for the "sideshow." first, the hits keep coming. the republican national committee is already facing criticism over expensing a late-evening visit to a sex-themed nightclub. so screw-ups like this next one don't help matters much. here's an rnc fundraising mailer, that was sent out last month in minnesota. the thing is, when you dial the number that's listed at the end of the form it doesn't lead to the rnc. check out where that 1-800 actually directs you to, almost two ironic to be true. let's listen. >> hey there, sexy guy, welcome to an exciting new way to go live. one-on-one with hot, horny girls waiting right now to talk to you. lie back, baby, relax. >> that's right. a phone sex line. no keding. a spokesman for the rnc told politicalco that the number was a typographical error. now the problem is that you have to tell us it's a typographical
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error at this point. next, priceless video of georgia congressman hank wilson at a house armed services hearing last week. questioning about about plans to stage 8,000 marines and fair that manicallies on the western pacific island of guam. now here's the congressman's concern. the influx could cause island of guam to capsize. listen to this member of congress talk now. >> well, this is a, an island that at its widest level, is what, 12 miles from shore to shore? >> i don't have the exact dimensions. but to your point, sir, i think guam is a small island. >> yeah, my fear is that the whole island will become so overly populated that it will tip over and capsize.
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>> we don't anticipate that. >> so what does a person make of that exchange? the congressman went on by the way, quite a while, asking about the size of the island before making the incredible statement. he could have looked up the facts, but then he says he's worried that the congressman is worried that the island might turn over like it's a raft or something. and this guy's representing people in congress. i don't know what to make of this one. time now for tonight's big number. you know businesses back for wall street's big banks. but what about the hedge funds? the exclusive risk-prone investment pools known for reaping huge profits. "the new york times" highlights the top 2009 hedge fund incomes. at number four, a guy named john paulson made $2.3 billion this past year. best known for betting against subprime mortgages. well before people realized they were ticking time bombs. at number three, james simons, a mathematician, this guy got a ph.d. from uc berkeley at age
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23. he made it by mathematics, i guess. the runner-up spot a familiar game, mr. george soros, he's still got $3.3 billion in hedge fund income last year. get these numbers, billion. so who earned the top money? >> a guy named david pepper with $4 billion, with nine zeros. he bet big in fall 2008 that the government would prop up wall street with taxpayer money. that was his bet. david pepper, the top hedge fund earner with $4 billion in income last year. not saying it's earned, but he's got it. i'm going to have to something to say about this kind of money in our so-called free enterprise system. which we nicely call free enterprise. up next, get ready to be outraged, the father of a fallen marine who sued a vulgar, anti-gay church group that protested his son's funeral, he's been ordered to pay the church group's legal fees by an appellate court. i don't know how this kind of stuff happened. we'll talk to the father who has been hit with this bill.
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he's got to pay the bill for the screamers who went out and distracted from his son's funeral, having given his life for his country.
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i'm julia boorstin with your cnbc market wrap. stocks accelerating towards the close. the dow jones industrials finishing more than 70 points higher, the s&p 500 adding eight and the nasdaq rebounding four points after showing significant weakness this afternoon. the markets started off strong on some positive economic reports. manufacturing activity showing stronger-than-expected improvement in march. analysts say steady gains in that sector are the clearest sign the recovery has legs. and in a slight drop in weekly jobless claims, fueling enthusiasm about tomorrow's monthly report from the labor
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department. in stocks, financials looking strong throughout the day with bank of america, american express and j.p. morgan finishing towards the top of the dow. but kindle creator, am zon taking a big hit today, after cutting new pricing deals with two major publishers. amazon agreed to begin charging more for the publisher's e-book best sellers. back to "hardball." almost two weeks ago, albert snyder appeared on this show. and told the heart-wrenching story of losing his son who served in the military in iraq. and the further anguish, when a group of demonstratored showed up near the church when the funeral service was being held for his son. they are holding signs with horrible things on them.
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the group demonstrating at the funeral claims, says that the death of u.s. soldiers in iraq and afghanistan, is god's judgment for america's tolerance of homosexuality here at home. mr. steiner took the protest to court and won at the district level. and then at at the appeals level it was overturned. now the supreme court will hear the case this fall. but on friday, the appeals court, the second level of justice ordered snyder to pay the legal fees of this church group, $16,000, the group that demonstrated at his son's funeral. albert snyder joins me. and thank you, michael for being bag, you were part of the first interview. mr. snyder, thank you for your family's sacrifice and i don't even know what to say further. but i don't know what it means to lose a son, i have a couple and i don't know what it would be like and i just can only as a father, i just don't know what to say. to his credit, my colleague on the other network, fox, bill o'reilly is helping you out.
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what was your reaction when you were told by the court that you had to pay the costs of going to court against this foul group? >> chris, i think this decision, chris, hit me harder than any of them. it was bad enough that they overturned the verdict, but then to come out and tell me that i have to give them $16,000 more them to go do this to other soldiers -- it's, it really hurts. >> so now they can do it for free. they don't have to pay anything. they just go around and -- >> have you ever figured out what in their heads led them to go to somebody whose life is impeccable. has nothing to do with the lifestyle or the orientation they don't like. it has nothing to do with that. it's just a soldier who died for his country. why, how do they justify going -- going and distracting from this religious experience and national service
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recognition? how do they justify it? do you know? who are these people? >> chris, i don't know how -- well, they're a bunch of -- they're not even religious people, in my opinion, chris. in my opinion, fred phelps is nothing but a con artist. unfortunately, i think his children, his family, believe what he says. this is a way he makes money. >> my hunch he just goes to where really good people are meeting. because he knows it's such an awful thing to be doing, that the press can't avoid covering it, it's so awful. we have to cover the most sickest people. should we just not cover these events? >> well, he makes sure that they're covered. by the announcements that he sends out to the media. and to law enforcement. i mean, the announcement he sent out on my son, it had matt's picture on it. underneath of it, it had a military coffin and underneath that, it said burial of an ass.
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and said they would be protesting at st. john's catholic dog kennel. so they invite the media. >> i guess it's the smell of these people that arouses us. i don't know what to say. let's go to michael merkonis. michael, you're an attorney, what's about the blindness of our apep at court system that they would not exercise some discretion and say, this is not a frivolous suit. it's gotten to the appellate level, it's going to the supreme court. there's nothing frivolous about this it was an legitimate and i would say honorable lawsuit brought by mr. snyder against this group. why would he get hit with this boom boomerang of court costs? >> i'm optimistic that mr. snyder is going to prevail in front of the united states supreme court when they hear the case in october. there's other instances where the first amendment has been ruled to be something that can be regulated. look at defamation, look at obscenity, look at fighting
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rules. and if he's successful in the supreme court, this will get wiped out. i would never defend this. i think it's outrageous. but the federal rules of civil procedure, it's rule 39, do permit some form of loser pays in this country. and i've read the bill of costs. it's printing costs and it's a filing fee that total the $16,000. i think we'd be mistaken if we looked at it and we said that the fourth circuit was deliberately slapping the father of a fallen marine. it's part and parcel of our federal rules and they were exercising something that unfortunately, is available to a successful party. we hope it gets wiped out. i've done my party. my listeners have done their part to write a lot of checks to make sure that he has a lot in terms of money to fight this all the way to the supreme court. >> maybe we can do our small part here. if you'd like to help mr. snyder's cause, and that's to pay the court costs of going to the supreme court and actually helping the effort that bill o'reilly is already helping here. go to matthewsnyder.organize.
5:40 pm we've never done this before on this show. but it's certainly a worthy cause. mr. snyder, let me ask you about your son, what was he like, let's talk about a good guy now, your son and what he did for his country. >> he was a very good kid. but before i do that, can i just thank michael. michael was there for me the whole time. michael was one i leaned on when it all came down and michael, thank you, very, very much. as far as matt goes, matt was a good kid. matt was a really good kid. i think the one thing a lot of people remember most about matt was his ears. he had really big ears and they stuck out. but he, he had the type of personality and he truly lived by the phrase -- if you don't have something nice to say about somebody, then just don't say anything at all. he loved soccer. he was, he was very good at
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soccer. he liked baseball. and he was a very loyal brother and a very loyal friend and a very loyal son. >> what were his feelings about serving his country? what were his -- >> he loved it. >> what were his feelings about going off and facing the horrors and dangers of war in iraq? >> we talked about, he came home the christmas before he went over there. and we talked about it. and you know, i was very concerned and he said, dad, i have a job to do. and i'll get it done. and he loved being a marine. he wanted to be a marine, probably since the time he was ten or 11 years old. >> thank you for your son's service and thank you, dad. and my friend, michael smerconish, you covered yourself with honor. today in rome, the pope
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celebrated mass. a top vatican official on behalf of the pope criticized "the new york times," calling it distinguish sent by any reasonable standard of fairness. coming up next on "hardball," only on msnbc. when you want ak that travels with you. with you when you're ready for the next move. [ male announcer ] now that wells fargo and wachovia have come together, what's in it for you? unprecedented strength, the stability of the leading community bank in the nation and with 12,000 atms and thousands of branches, we're with you in more ways and places than ever before. with you when you want the most from your bank. [ male announcer ] wells fargo. together we'll go far.
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we're already seeing some cracks in the republican pledge to repeal health care. senator bob corker of tennessee says his party's efforts to repeal the bill are futile. quote, the fact is that's not going to happen. corker told dozens of people in vanderbilt. as corker points out, republicans will need 67 senate votes and that's not likely to come along for a while. thank you, senator, for the reality check. it's a simple fact it takes 67 to override a veto and it is a democratic president who passed the ball and signed. this great nation will endure as it has endured, will revive and will prosper. so first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.
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we're back. the vatican is pushing back hard against "the new york times" coverage of sexual abuse incidents in the catholic church and what role the pope may have had in handling cases in the past. here's part of what cardinal william lovado in nevada who leads the church's congregation. said i am not proud of america's newspaper of record, "the new york times" as a paragon of fairness. asked the "times" to reconsider the attack mode on pope benedict. ann thompson, let me ask you about this. this is a big-picture question. does the vatican know how deep the trouble it's in? we've got a new poll out that shows the pope, you don't usually poll the pope. but he's down 20 points among
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everybody. your thoughts? their thoughts? >> yeah, and it's not -- it's not just in the united states. they're seeing similar declines in germany. yes, does the vatican understand that this is a big serious issue? absolutely. does it respond in the way that we are used to having political organizations respond? or multinational corporations respond to a crisis? the answer is, absolutely not. you've got 0 remember, that this is a big bureaucracy. and italian-dominated bureaucracy. and it moves extraordinarily slowly. but i will tell you, chris, that if the vatican were to put out talking points, the first one would be this -- because i have heard this from everyone i have talked to here in vatican city since i arrived over the weekend. and that is -- that pope benedict xvi is the right man to handle this crisis. why, you ask? because they say as the head of
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the congregation of the doctrine of faith under pope john paul ii, he read every one of those files on abusive priests, he gets it and he understand it is. the second talking point would be to point to the 2008 u.s. visit that pope benedict made. and when he was in the united states, when was in the united states, when he met privately with those abuse victims from the archdiocese in boston. it was in a very pastoral manner. he listened to those abuse victim, he prayed with those abuse victims and it's against something else officials point to, as evidence at the pope does get this. >> one thing the cardinal seems to be missing is the reality here. in his letter, comments to the new york city, i think the evidence is clear from the documents that father murphy, he was the abusing priest, was a serial abuser of children. helpless children oftentimes.
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aren't they always helpless? what is this careful oftentimes? is there any time a children are not? i'm not picking a point here. he's supposed to be the communications guy. he's saying oftentimes helpless, kids, i've been there, helpless. the priest is god's representative, you're helpless. >> reporter: i think, further on, cardinal levada makes no excuses for father murphy. in that posting on the vatican website, i think he called what father murphy did, egregious acts. he's not in any way trying to excuse father murphy. the point he makes is the interference is that then cardinal rat zis inger, now pop
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benedict the xvi. he wrote to him and asked he be allowed to die as a priest and not be defrocked. there is some implication cardinal ratsinger tried to stop that defrocking process and he say there's no evidence to that. you're making supposition here but there's no proof. >> thanks for that great report. thanks for staying up late over there. anne thompson in beautiful rome this time of night. i've been there late myself. with me now is sally quinn. you're not a catholic. let's look at the perspective you have on this as a journalist. what is the pope's problem? can he deal with it? >> it does remind me a lot about watergate with the catholic church attacking the, n "new yo times." that's what happened when the white house started attacking
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the "washington post." one of the big problems is perception. i don't think they understand the devastating cover-up. one of the situations most appalling is the idea cardinal law who was in boston and knew about the cover-up is now in an exalted position in rome, right next to the pope as if nothing had ever happened. when the pope came and apologized, i think you would call it a non-apology apology. he said he was sorry for those hurt. what he needed to say, this horrible thing happened you to, we apologize, we ask for forgiveness and then we do something to make it possible for reconciliation, ie we open the doors and root out all the evildoers and do something to make sure these people get punished and dealt with.
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they're not being open and not agree with you on cardinal law. he shouldn't be in that exalted position. he's a symbol of cover-up. thank you. when we return, i will have thoughts on free enterprise, the sunny name we give to capitalism. i think it might be broken. or maybe it's trying to tell you something. yeah, but what could it be trying... oh, i left my 401(k) at my old job. and i left a jacket on the back of my door. but i think the line is talking about my 401(k). leave a 401(k) behind? roll it over with the company that's helping more people reach retirement than anyone else. when it comes to investing, never settle. fidelity investments.
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let me finish tonight with a
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scary thought, especially those who believe in free enterprise, you know the sunny name for free capitalism. what happens to people who are out of work of even part-time jobs and even given up looking for work and what happens to those who get up and go to work and arrive home and still can't pay the bills. like now the working poor. what happens to those who live paycheck to paycheck and never seem to climb up higher, never seems to billed up much worth, like now. what happens if these millions of people, underemployed, working poor and struggling class wake up and see headlines seeing a few people making billions of dollars of years like in wall street, like hedge fund guys one made $4 billion this year. get up today and read the paper and what happens to those who don't seem to make anything, not cars or steal or computers and don't even tell us jokes like
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letterman or colbert. they just make money, billions of dollars from us, billion dollar socialism. it rides atop the sweat of the worker bees. the working poor. didn't you read the paper this morning? i wonder if the people rise up some day and raise hell about this and really cause trouble for this deal or don't bother, it gets worse, more millions at the top and more crunched in the middle making it, and watch people who don't make anything at all except money. there's a bill in congress that may do something about this, called financial reg, a boring name. that's "hardball" for now. right now, it's time for "the ed show" with ed schultz. good evening, americans. welcome to "the ed show" from minneapolis tonight. these stories are hitting my hot buttons tonight. fox news, they're lying again.
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even toby keith has called them out for it. it's all centered around sarah palin's new big show. outfox director robert greenwald will join me in a moment to talk about all the lies. environmental activists not real happy about president obama's decision to allow more offshore drilling. i'll talk to the executive director of the sierra club coming up in the program. 1 in 10 americans, that's the number, that's how many people are out of work in this country. on wall street, hedge fund managers have had a record year and are raking in billions of dollars. we'll give you the details at the bottom of the hour. first, this is the story that has me fired up tonight or should i say, i told you so. this could be the biggest april fool's joke ever, of all time. sarah palin is debuting a fox show called real american stories. it happens tonight.
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one problem, though, it's not real. fox news is trying to pull another fast one over the eyes of the american people. they will stop at absolutely nothing. they fabricated numbers of crowds in the past, misrepresented video, and, of course, they have bullet pointed misinformation on health care one time after another. let me tell you, this one really takes the cake. one of the most visible people on this planet right now, whether you like it or not, is sarah palin. they give her this tv show. then they find a way to twist the truth about the content of the show. here it is. >> thursday, they are ordinary americans, who have led extraordinary lives. sarah palin profiles these real americans who have given back, given all and have never given up. plus, their famous faces, hear the real story behind their incredible liin credit


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